This Day in History: 2017-11-20
November 18, 1945 – “Wilma Mankiller, First Female Chief of the Cherokee Nation, is Born”
Wilma Mankiller, who served as the Chief of the Cherokee Nation for ten years from 1985 to 1995, was born in Tahlequah, Oklahoma. In 1985, Mankiller became the first female Chief of the Cherokee Nation. Before serving in this capacity, she served as the deputy chief of the Cherokee Nation for two years, getting elected to the post in 1983. Mankiller became the Chief when Ross Swimmer died in 1985, but was elected to the post in 1987 and then reelected in 1991. Under the U.S. federal policy of Native American self-determination, Mankiller improved federal-tribal negotiations.
December 8, 2009 - "U.S. Agrees to Settle Lawsuit Brought by Native Americans for $3.4 Billion"
The United States federal government announced that it intends to pay $3.4 billion to settle claims that it has mismanaged the revenue in American Indian trust funds. In 2012, it finalized this settlement, ending one of the largest and most complicated class-action lawsuits ever brought against the United States. The lawsuit lasted 15 years in total and involved hundreds of thousands of land trust accounts that date back to the 19th century. Specialists in federal tribal law described the suit as one of the most important in the history of legal disputes involving the government's treatment of American Indians.